GEORGE TOWN: A Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) bus transporting 30 people, including 24 Penang Road Transport Department (JPJ) officers, broke down when it caught fire during its journey to a magistrate’s court here.
The officers were on their way to court to be remanded in what is believed to involve the biggest group of personnel from JPJ.
The bus, which was travelling from Seberang Jaya, is believed to have broken down due to an engine malfunction along the Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu Expressway around 9am yesterday.
A Fire and Rescue Department spokesman said a team from the Jalan Perak fire station was dispatched to the scene.
“When they arrived, the blaze was already under control after being put out using a fire extinguisher by the MACC staff,” he said, adding that there were no casualties.
The 30 suspects were then transported to court using 10 MACC cars, and they arrived there at 10.40am.
They were then remanded to assist in investigations for allegedly protecting lorry drivers who committed road offences in Penang.
Senior assistant registrar Nurfadrina Zulkhairi granted the seven-day remand order until Tuesday.
The case is being investigated under Section 17(a) of the MACC Act 2009.
An MACC spokesman said the total number of arrests made was 33 people, including three women who were released on MACC bail.
On Tuesday, the MACC arrested the individuals, aged between 31 and 54, in Penang.
According to sources, the enforcement officers are believed to have received monthly payment, totalling between RM10,000 and RM32,000.
The payment was an inducement to not take action against lorry drivers who committed road offences.
The payment was also for tip-offs, which the companies and drivers received to alert them about JPJ operations.
The arrest was part of a major operation, which was conducted by officers from the MACC headquarters, with assistance from its Penang office.
In Kuala Lumpur, city JPJ director Datuk Ismail Mohd Zawawi said there will be no compromise for officers found to have committed wrongdoing.
He added integrity should be given top priority by all JPJ staff, adding that action will be taken against the bad apples.
Ismail said JPJ has its own integrity unit, which monitors the JPJ staff and ensures that they do not get involved in corrupt activities or disciplinary issues.
“We have 337 personnel and we cannot monitor all of them.
“However, the integrity unit is tasked to identify the problematic ones and take action against them,” he told a press conference after attending the state-level JPJ Day here.